Supreme Court protects Big Pharma from liability for vaccine-damaged children

By RawStory (AFP)

Vaccine makers are protected from lawsuits, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday, dashing the hopes of a US couple who had sought monetary damages after their daughter fell ill after a round of routine childhood inoculations.

By a 6-2 vote, the US high court, in an opinion by written Justice Antonin Scalia, rejected the family’s argument that they should allowed to sue drug maker Wyeth for not making a safer vaccine.

Hannah Bruesewitz in 2010

The case concerned Hannah Bruesewitz, who as a six-month-old infant received a series of injections to protect her against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis, the illness also known as whooping cough.

The family, from the northeastern state of Pennsylvania, found that after the third injection, the cognitive development of their now-teenaged daughter slowed dramatically and she developed seizures and other health problems that continue to this day.

The family insists that the girl’s medical problems were a side-effect of the vaccine; Wyeth, the manufacturer, over the years has steadfastly denied any link exists between the girl’s condition and its vaccine.

The US high court ruled that the vaccine maker, which is owned by Pfizer Inc, the world’s largest pharmaceutical company, is not subject to the liability laws that govern some other products.

The court ruled that design-defect lawsuits were preempted by a 1986 law, the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act, which created a national compensation program for vaccine-injury claims, and also gave vaccine makers protection from some lawsuits.

The law allows for complaints to be brought before a special tribunal; the family early had pleaded and lost its case before that panel.

The ruling also affirms a lower court decision that also had found in favor of Wyeth.

In a statement, the American Academy of Pediatrics hailed the ruling.

“Today’s Supreme Court decision protects children by strengthening our national immunization system and ensuring that vaccines will continue to prevent the spread of infectious diseases in this country,” the physicians’ group’s president Marion Burton said.

“Today, the US Supreme Court affirmed what pediatricians have been advocating for decades” Burton said. “Vaccines save lives.”

Wyeth, meanwhile, in a statement released Tuesday said it also was “pleased.”

“We have great sympathy for the Bruesewitzes. We recognize, however, that the Vaccine Act provides for full consideration of the liability issues through the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.

“Here the Vaccine Court concluded that the petitioners failed to prove their child’s condition was caused by vaccination,” the company statement said.

 

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4 responses to “Supreme Court protects Big Pharma from liability for vaccine-damaged children

  1. What a travesty – first our hallowed high court allows unimpeded corporate access to political campaign support, and now they have protection from liability for bad medicine.

  2. Very well said. I for no reason considered I would agree with this thoughts and opinions, however I’m starting to view things from a different view. I have got to research much more on that as it would seem really exciting. One issue I don’t understand though is how almost everything is associated together.

  3. I would like anyone to find me on facebook! I am at fightingmercury@gmail.com!.

    I am spreading the real news on how big business and the medical field can railroad you and then write off you as a cost of doing business with no liability!

    You will see that mercury is in these vaccines. I can not be sure if it the mercury or something else in the vaccine that injures babies. But, I am sure that mercury alone in dental amalgam is damaging babies, parents, and all humans that get it in their mouths.

    This is another cover up! Mercury is toxic! The dentist do not legally have to tell you anything! It is a scam. When people get sick of mentally ill because of the mercury they don’t know why because they don’t know because they don’t know the mercury is in their mouth!

    What a scam! So I am also reporting and watching vaccines. Because they contain mercury! And usually this is why parents believe it is damaging kids! The amount of mercury is at toxic levels!

  4. It is so sad what happened to this girl! The companies and the people who approve of this and look the other way should be shot!

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